Consumer VoIP specialist Vonage (NYSE:VG, news, filings) announced its Q4 earnings this morning, turning in earnings per share of $0.02. That’s down a penny from the third quarter but up nine cents from last year. Revenues of $224M were up a little less than 1% sequentially and about 0.5% above the same quarter last year. That of course is in keeping with Vonage’s strategy lately, which has been to completely revamp its cost structure while treading water on the top line. In that regard, churn fell from 3.4% in Q3 to 2.8% in Q4 – still high, but lower – and they finished the year with 2.4M lines in service.
Also today, the company hired a new Chief Financial Officer: Barry L. Rowan. Actually Mr. Rowan gets four titles right off the bat: CFO, CAO, EVP, and Treasurer. I guess that’s a pretty good day for whoever makes those nameplates for executive offices. While he comes in on the financial rather then the operational side, it is quite interesting that Vonage chose someone with a substantial background in the wireless voice business – as Mr. Rowan was previously CFO at Nextel Partners. The move dovetails with the company’s new Vonage World initiative, with which mobile customers can use the company’s app to reduce their international calling costs.
And that perhaps is the emerging answer to the question of where the once high flying Vonage goes from here now that it has managed to survive its own VoIP bubble and a recession. Deeper and deeper into the app stores of course. Rather than spending vast amounts of their own money generating buzz and even more of it shipping ATA equipment, they’re going to ride the buzz and the sales of the iPhone and Android. They’ll have company though, I have a feeling this segment is going to get crowded fast.
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